I vO BANCROFT LIBRARY THE LIBRARY OF THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA b *2 FREMONT'S HUNDRED DAYS IN MISSOURI. SPEECH OF SCHUYLER COIFAX, OF INDIANA, * IN REPLY TO MR. BLAIR, OF MISSOURI, ' * DELIVERED In the House of Representatives, March 7, 1862. The House being in Committee of tlie Whole on the state of the Union Mr. COLFAX said : Mr. Chairman, I did not intend, at the opening of my friend's re marks, to speak on this subject to-day ; and therefore am but illy prepared to answer his elaborate argument of two hours in length. But I am gratified that the House, on my mo tion, extended his time, so that he could pre sent the whole array of charges at once. While I differed, as is known to him and many other members of the House, with the Administration, which I assisted to elect, as to the supersedure of Major General Fremont in the department of the West, I desire, lest I - might be misunderstood, to say at the outset, once and for all, that no matter what gen eral the Administration may put up or put, down, I shall sustain it with all my heart and soul and strength and mind in every military movement that it makes against the enemy. I believe it to be our duty to do so. It is, under God, the only means by which we can put down this gigantic, satanic, conspiracy and re bellion. And although I lament the superse dure of a general who lives to-day in the loyal hearts of millions of the American people, that can make no difference in my earnest and cor dial support of the Administration. I pass over many remarks of the gentleman from Missouri, [Mr. BLAIR,] which, I am sure, he will himself, in his cooler moments, regret. He has seen fit % mingle personalities with his criticisms, and to speak of a gentleman who holds a commission as major general in the army as a tool, a dupe, a designing man. I cannot follow the gentleman here. The sub ject is too grave to be thus discussed. There has been a warm friendship between myself and the gentleman from Missouri almost since our boyhood, arid I shall not suffer a sin gle remark to fall from my lips which could wound him or any friend of his, or any member of his family. I rise simply to vindicate his tory, and to prove, from the records of the day, that my friend from Missouri has had his feel ings and judgment perverted, or, perhaps, I should rather say influenced, by prejudice. He spoke about the " idolators" of Fremont. My friend has not used the word fittingly. Those whom he calls the idolators of Fremont are the men who stand by him to-day, just as my friend did from the commencement of his acquaint ance with him till the last of August, 18G1, up to which time he was his warm, his devoted friend and admirer. He ought, from that long acquaintance, to have known his mind, his ca pacity, his judgment, his will. In August he was his friend, warm and true ; in September he was not. All my crime is, that I continue the same friendship that, in common with him, I had in August, and did not change with him in September. Mr. Chairman, men are but nothing in this struggle. They are but ciphers the whole of them. These generals, with all their epaulets and sashes, are but the instruments by which the strong arm of the country is to put down this rebellion. Since the war broke out, I have, in ray humble sphere and capacity, endeavor ed to preach the doctrine of forbearance and concord and unity, and have implored men on all sides to cease depreciating our generals. I have said that when they go forth at the head of their armies with their lives in tjaeir hands, they are entitled to confidence and respect. When the Administration supersedes them, well and good 5 let them pass away, unless, so far as, this afternoon, we vindicate the past, without saying what the Administration shall do in the future. I say this as to General McClellan, as I do about General Fremont, and every other general commanding. Whether the Administration shall yield to the wishes of hosts of the people by giving General Fremont another command, is no part of my argument to-day. I have no right to dictate on this point ; and further than I have already advised, I shall say nothing. I have this, also, to say about General Fre- -l FlB C.4, mont ; I do not take him to be perfect. I know that all men are fallible. He is some times an impulsive man. He has feelings, like all of us who are made of flesh and blood. I regret very much that he suffered this publi cation to be made, which the chairman of the joint committee on the conduct of the war ob jected to to day. I wish that he had bided his time a little longer. For six months he has been standing with closed lips, and listen ing to the allegations against him with a re ticence which has commanded the approbation not only of his friends at home, but of thou sands elsewhere in the civilized world, waiting patiently for the hour of his vindication. I wish he could have waited a few days longer. But I think that something ought to be par doned to a man who had poisoned arrows hurled against him from every side, and who had been deposed from his command under circumstances so painful and trying. Without disparaging any other general, I have this also to say of General Fremont: he is the only major general of the army who has, in this war, up to this date, gone out with his troops, away from his headquarters gone out over field and valley and mountain and plain and river. He was the only one. I suppose the others are willing to do it. But while that record lives and it will live in history no man will believe the intimations of the gentle man from Missouri, that Fremont is a timid man. The schoolboy at the log school-house knows very well that there is not a particle of timidity about the man. He may or may not have been fitted for the command of the depart ment of the West. I sincerely think he was. But whether he was or not, he is a brave and fear less man. He has braved death in a thousand forms, and has written his name high up on the scroll of history as a great discoverer, or as a great adventurer, if you will. He has planted the Stars and Stripes on the highest point of the Rocky Mountains. He has suffered priva tion and suffering and toil in his daring jour neys. His cheek has not blanched in the pres ence of danger or of death. And when he knew that the sword of Damocles was hanging over his head by a single hair, he went forth with his army in pursuit of the enemy, to pun ish treason with the sword, and encamped with the advance guard, instead of with the rear, as is usually the custom of commanding generals. No, sir; General Fremont is not a coward. He has no timidity. Mr. BLAIR, of Missouri. My friend does not state, I trust, that I called General Fremont a coward. Mr. GOLF AX. The language that my friend used was "timidity," which is of course a qual ified degree of cowardice. Now, in relation to this contract for the con struction of earthworks in St. Louis, I wish to say that I will be frank upon this subject as upon every other. I do not approve of that contract. I think the contractor made too much money out of it. I do not suppose it was made upon the judgment of General Fremont, but that he yielded to the opinions of the heads of the engineer department about prices. I think the prices were too high, and truth compels me to say so, because, when I stand here to vin dicate General Fremont, I will not sacrifice the truth to vindicate him or anybody else. If I speak at all, I must express my convictions. But admitting that there was extravagance in Jbds department, I ask whether every otter de partment of the army has been managed with more care and less extravagance? Has not the Government been imposed on even here, despite the keenest watchfulness of the most experi enced officers, some of whom have had no military duties to engross or distract their minds? Adj. Gen. Thomas says in his report that two or three hundred horses were found unfit for service ; that they were lame and ringboned and spavined, although it is not proved that Fremont had seen a single one of them. Well, sir, when I came to Washington at the begin- ing of the present session, upon looking into the Star, I noticed the sale of fourteen hundred condemned Government horses, of the army of the Potomac, which brought prices ranging from twenty-five cents to sixty dollars. Yet my friend had no denunciations against the man agement of this department. In time of war, in conducting operations on so extensive a scale, the experience of England in the Cri mean war, and of all other nations at such times, unfortunately prove that it is not to be ex pected that everything would be precisely right, that all articles shall be suddenly bought of the best quality and at the lowest prices. I noticed, also, that the exhibits attached to General Thomas's report contained two singular com plaints against General Fremont. One was a complaint by General Hunter, that Fremont had ordered him into the field, and that he had forty wagons and only forty-one mules. And the very next of the exhibits was a complaint by Quartermaster Turnley, within a few days of the date of General Hunter's letter, complain ing that Fremont had ordered him to push on the inspection of mules as rapidly as possible. I think these two complaints exactly answer each other. But how could Fremont have sat isfied both critics? % My friend from Missouri vindicates the char acter of the city of St. Louis. I wish I could believe all he says about the loyalty of that city, for I think it is a very pleasant city. I have spent many pleasant days there ; I have en joyed not only the hospitality of my friend from Missouri, representing the St. Louis district, but of many other friends in that city. I be lieve witfi him that the great body of the work ing men of that city are loyal, but that a ma jority of the men of wealth and high social po sition there are disloyal. Mr. BLAIR, of Missouri. The gentleman is mistaken. Mr. GOLF AX. I cannot yield to my friend, t at least until I have finished this sentence, j Why, sir, even since General Halleck assumed I the command of that department the secession ] candidates for officers of the Chamber of Com merce of St. Louis were elected by a sweeping majority. Mr. BLAIR, of Missouri. It is true that the secession candidates were elected by the Chamber of Commerce by a majority, and the same fact is true in reference to the Mercan tile Library Association of St. Louis, but that only shows that the commercial men of the city were largely engaged in commerce with the South, and were in that way identified with secession. But I say to the gentleman that I know the city well, and I know that the two regiments raised, which General Lyon took prisoners at Camp Jackson, were all the seces sion troops they could raise, and all they could arm. There was never any necessity of de claring martial law. Mr. COL PAX. I beg to say to my friend that I know something about St. Louis, though not, of course, as much as himself. I have not only visited it frequently, but I read the newspapers published there, and particularly a paper which used to be considered his organ, but I believe is not now a favorite of his, the St. Louis Democrat. And my friend knows very well that in the case of the Mercantile Library Association, every effort was made, both by the Unionists and secessionists, to carry the elec tion ; that the Union men paid the dues of Union members in arrears, and proposed num bers of others, qualified for admission, for the purpose of obtaining their votes, but never theless were defeated by a large majority. Mr. BLAIR, of Missouri. The reason why the Union men left the Hall, and refused to par ticipate in the meeting, was, that a hundred Union candidates to become members were excluded by a majority of the old members, under a technical rule requiring one day's notice before admission. I do not often read the organ of the Fremont party, of which the gentleman speaks, but I think I am pretty well acquainted with the facts, nevertheless. Mr. COLFAX. I have no doubt of it, and my friend knows very well that these members of the Chamber of Commerce, who elected their secesson candidate, voted for him openly as such in face of the United States military authorities in the city. They made no pro fessions of zealous loyalty, as many secession ists have done in face of an armed force. Their conduct was so open and undisguised that General Halleck ordered every one of the officers elect to come up and take the oath of allegiance ; being, I believe, the first civilians he imposed this upon, though he has required since more extensively still. Mr. BLAIR, of Missouri. The gentleman will allow me to say Mr. COLFAX. I cannot yield further. I did not interrupt my friend the whole time he was speaking. Mr. BLAIR, of Missouri. The gentleman says they were openly secession The CHAIRMAN. The gentleman from Missouri is out of order. The gentleman from Indiana declines to yield. Mr. BLAIR, of Missouri. I am a little sen sitive upon this point. Mr. COLFAX. Then I will yield, of course. Mr. BLAIR, of Missouri. I merely desire to say that these men did not vote for what was called a secession candidate, but for a man known to be a Union man, and who refused to hold the office after he had been elected. Mr. COLFAX. Still the statement remains uncontradicted that he was voted for as a se cession candidate by those who sympathized with the men who are in arms against the Gov ernment, and was elected as such. Mr. Chairman, I know that the mass of the people of the city of St. Louis, the working people, as I sjaid previously, are loyal-; for, sir, when this same General Fremont came back to that city after his removal ; when he came with no favors to confer, but degraded, dis honored, deposed from his command, the loyal people of that city, who had heard all the charges of their Representative against him, but who still confided in him, flocked by thou sands and tens of thousands, with banners and torchlights, and music and shoutings, to wel come him as no man was ever welcomed there before. Oh, yes, sir, the heart of the people of St. Louis is loyal ; they have proved it so. RESPONSIBILITY FOB THE DEATH OP GENERAL LYON. My friend from St. Louis has quoted docu ments and presented arguments to prove that General Fremont had it in his power to rein force General Lyon before the battle of Spring field, and that his failure to perform that duty was the cause of General Lyon's death, and these I desire now to examine. Sir, the death of General Lyon occurred on the 10th of Au gust, and yet the friendship of the gentleman from Missouri for General Fremont continued undimiuished for weeks after. He continued to be the friend of the man whom he now ar raigns as a guilty criminal ; for if the charges he makes are proved, General Fremont, in wilfully suffering the death of that gallant officer, was guilty of a no less crime than mur der. I think I can show to this committee that twenty days after the death of General Lyon my friend from Missouri did not charge Gen eral Fremont with crime in failing to send rein forcements. I will read the dispatch of Cap tain Schofield, now General Schofield, whom my friend knows ; because he was, I believe^ connected with his regiment at St. Louis when I was there. I want to show the reasons why General Lyon was not reinforced, and I shall show it in a way my friend from Missouri can not deny, unless he denies the documents themselves. In his dispatch, as adjutant gen eral of General Lyon, dated Springfield, July 15, he says : " Governor Jackson is concentrating his forces in the southwestern part of the State, and is receiving large rein forcements from Arkansas, Tennessee, Louisiana, and Texas. His effective force will soon be certainly not less than thirty thousand men, probably much larger. All idea of any fur ther advance movement, or of even maintaining our present position, must s(.on le abandoned, unless the Government fur nish us promptly with large reinforcements and supplies. Our troops are badly clothed, poorly fed, and imperfectly sup plied with tents ; none of them have yet been paid, and the three mouths' volunteers have become disheartened to such an extent that very few of them are willing to renew their enlistment. The blank pay-rolls are not here, and the long time required to get them here, fill them up, send them to "Washington, have the payment ordered, and the pay -mas ter reach us, leaves us no hope that our troops can be paid for five or six weeks to come. Upon these circumstances there remains no other course but to urgently press upon the attention of the Government the absolute necessity of sending us fresh troops at once, with ample supplies for them and for those now here. At least ten thousand men should be sent, and that promptly. You will send the inclosed despatch by telegraph to General McClellan, and also to the War Department, and forward by mail a copy of this letter." This is directed to Chester Harding, jr., assist ant adjutant general at St. Louis, who doubt less sent the dispatch to General McClellan as requested, and here is the dispatch, dated July 20, of General McClellan, in reply : To CHESTER HABDING, Jr, Assistant Adjutant General : In case of an attack on Cairo, have none but Illinois troops to reinforce, and only eleven thousand arms in Illinois. Will direct two regiments to be ready at Caseyville ; but you.will only use them for defence of St. Louis, and in case of absolute necessity. Telegraph me from time to timo. G. B. MCCLELLAN, Major General United States Army, He could not allow reinforcements to go to the support of General Lyon in the southwest. There was more imminent danger he felt nearer by ; and he pointed to Cairo as one of the threat ened points, and St. Louis as another. He will 11 direct two regiments to be ready at Caseyville, but you will ONLY use them for defence of St. Louis, and in case of absolute necessity." Here is a dispatch of General McClellan, five days after Lyon's appeal for troops through his assistant adjutant general, and six days before General Fremont arrived at St. Louis, declining to send reinforcements to General Lyon. And now I want General Lyon to speak from his grave, and answer whether he considers General Fre mont responsible for his death. I retd, first, a letter from Lyon himself to Assistant Adjutant General Harding, at St. Louis : SPRINGFIELD, MISSOURI, July 17, 1861. Sm: I inclose you a copy of a letter to Col. Townsend on the subject t.-f an order from Gen. Scott, which calls for five companies o; the second infantry to le withdraum from the West and sent ><> Washington. A previous order withdraws the mounted trocpt, as I am informed, and were it not that some of them were en route to this place they would now be in Washington. This order carried out would not nmv leave at Fort Leavcnworth a single company. 1 have companies B and E second infantry now under ord/'rs for Washington, and if all these troops leave me I can do rmhinij, and mnst retire in the absence of oUter troops to supply their places. In fact, I am badly enough off at the best, and must utterly fail if my regulars all go. At Washington troops from all the Northern, Middle, and Eastern States are available for the support of the army in Virginia, and more are understood to be already there than are wanted, and it seems strange that so many trotps must go on from the West, and strip us of the means of defence ; but if it is the intention to give vp the West, let it ~be so. I omit a severe allusion to General Scott, be cause I do not wish, by reproducing it here, even to give it currency, feeling that General Lyon, in his great anxiety, did him injustice. The letter concludes : Cannot you stir up this matter and secure us relief? See Fremont if he has arrived. The want of supplies has crippled me so that I cannot move, and I do not know when I can. Everything seems to combine against me at this point. Stir up Blair. Yours truly, N. LYON, Commanding. Colonel HARDiN 7 G 7 St. Louis Arsenal, Missouri. I would not allude to my friend's brother at all if it had not been that he himself alluded to him in his speech, and the only allusion I shall have occasion to make to him is the one I am now about to make. I wish to use his evidence to show why General Lyon was not reinforced. On the 26th of July last, Montgomery Blair wrote to General Fremont as follows : WASHINGTON, July 26, 1861. DEAR GENERAL : I have two telegrams from you, but find it impossible now to get any attention to Missouri or ^"(.-.st ern matters from the authorities here. You will have to do the best you can, and take all needful responsibility to defend and protect the people over whom you are specially set. * * * * * * * " Yours, truly, and in haste, M. BLAIR. That was five days after the battle of Bull Run, and when this city was supposed to be in imminent danger ; and I doubt not that fact explains why the West was comparatively neg lected. I shall assume that, and blame no one, for my object and resolution is to attack no one to-day, but to simply give reasons for the faith that is in me. I shall read now some more extracts from General Lyon's correspondence, because the one I have read was not the only protest he made. The next is from a letter from General Lyon, written to Colonel Harding on the day after Fremont reached St. Louis, and ten days after the previous letter. He says, under date of July 27: " If the Government cannot give due attention to the West Her Interests must have a corresponding disparagement." And in a memorandum from General Lyon, sent by Colonel Phelps to General Fremont, dated Springfield, July 27, he says : " The safety of the State is hazarded ; orders from General Scott strip the entire West of regular forces, and increase the chances of sacrificing it." But I wish now to read the statement of his assistant adjutant general, Colonel Harding. It is long, but it does justice to the dead gen eral and to the living general ; and it is written by the assistant adjutant general, who, from his confidential relations with his chief, knew his thoughts beat of all men now living. " Looking, then, to the position of affairs in this State on ie 26th July, 1861, it will be found that Gen. Lyon was in the southwest, in need of reinforcements. There was trouble in the northwest, requiring more troops than were there. In the northeast there were, no more troops than were required to perform the task allotted to them, while in tin; south and southeast there was a rebel army of .suffi cient force to endanger Bird's Point, Cape Qirardeau, Iron- ton, Holla, and St. Louis, and no adequate preparation was made to meet it. <k Gen. Fremont sent the 8th Missouri to Cape Girardeau, and the 4th U. S. Reserve Corps (whose term of service was to expire on the Sth August) to reinforce Bland at Ironton. He took some of Gen. Pope's force from him, added to it two battalions of the 1st and 2d U. S. Kes.-n e Corps, (whose term of service was to expire on the 7th August.) equipped Buel's light battery, and started about the 1st August for Bird's Point, with the troops thus collected, being some thing less than 3,800 men, and beino; also. all the available troops in this region, expecting to find an enemy not less than 20,000 strong. " Subsequent events showed that the rebel force was not overestimated, and nothing but the reinforcements sent to the points above named and the expedition down the river prevented its advance upon them Common report greatly magnified these reinforcements; and it was gener ally believed in the city, and no doubt so reported to the rebel leaiers, that Fremont had moved some 10.0UO or 12,- OOa troops to the southeast, while in fact he did not have over 5,50 ;> to move, and was not strong enough at any point to take the field and commence offensive operations " Gen. Fremont was not inattentive to the situation . .f Gen. Lyou's column, and went so far as to remove the garrison of Booneville, in order to send him aid." But my friend from Missouri says that there were quantities of troops coming into St. Louis who could have been detailed to reinforce Gen eral Lyon. So there were ; but hear what Col onel Harding says : " During the first days of August, troops arrived in the city in large numbers. Nearly all of them were unarmed ; all were without transportation. Regiment after regiment laid for days in the city ivithout any equipments, for the reason that Ike arsenal was exhausted, and arms and accoutrements had to be brought from the East. From these men General Lyon would have had reinforcements, although they were wholly uupracticed in the use of the musket, and knew nothing of movements in the field ; but in the mean time the battle of the 10th of August was fought." And yet, when they were entirely without arms, and Fremont sought, at this very time the 6th of August in his overwhelming anxi ety and solicitude, to buy any kind of arms to put into their hands to protect the Unton, afyi put down the rebellion, and save the lives of our brave soldiers and their generals at all the'ex- posed points in his department, he was denoun ced from one end of the country to the other as being in the hands of contractors, and in cor rupt collusion with knaves. The inferior arms that he bought at this critical moment in his hour of direst extremity forms one of the counts of the Investigating Committee's indict ment against him. If this is justice, God save me from ever being in any position in this Gov ernment to receive such justice ! My friend stated, and I took down the exact words that fell from his lips, that " there was at that time no necessity to reinforce Cairo from St. Louis 5 that it could have been reinforced from other directions." Now, I differ with him on that point, and I think I can prove that I am right. Fremont then had actually but little available force under his command. Indeed, on the 16th of July, only ten days before Fre mont reached St. Louis, General Lyon had had to authorize one regiment of his little band at Springfield (Colonel Brown's fourth) to return ;o St. Louis, to be mustered out of service, at the expiration of their three months' enlistment The three months' men would not re-enlist, be cause they could not get their pay. The West at that time, in the pressure from the East, and :he imminent peril of the Capital, seemed to 3e neglected. The troops already under arms did not see the paymaster, and they would not re- enlist. With this inadequate force and this lack of arms, Fremont had to choose between reinforcing one point or the othes. Now, I submit the question to the House and the coun try, which of those two points was the most im portant; the one at the end of a wagon road in southwestern Missouri, whence Lyon could possibly retreat if he felt that he could not sus tain his position, and the other at the mouth of the Ohio river, where it joins the Mississippi, commanding both streams, and the furthest point south of which we had possession? Which was the most important? Should they retire from Cairo or from Springfield? I con tend, that, as this evidence proves, Fremont could only reinforce one of these points, and he went down to Cairo on the 1st of 'August. My friend insists that General Prentiss's dis patches prove that he did not stand in pressing need of reinforcements. Let us see. I read now what General Prentiss said. General Pren- tiss was commanding at Cairo, and on the 23d of July he wrote to Colonel Harding as follows : " Have but eight (8) regiments here. Six (6) of them are three (3) months' men Their lime expires this week are re organizing now. I have neither tents nor wagons, and must hold Cairo and Bird's Point." He said he had but eight regiments, and six of them were three' months' men, and their term expired that very week, before Fremont could get there, leaving only two certainly available regiments at Cairo. Now let us see what was the position of the rebel forces in the vicinity of Cairo. I read again from General Prentiss, under date of July 28 : " To Major General FREMONT : " Rebels from Tennessee are concentrating at New Mad rid, Missouri, with avowed intention of assaulting Bird's Point. They may intend going to Cape Girardeau. Colonel Marsh has no battery. I have none to spare. My command is merging from three months' to three years 1 service on half recess. Mustering in yesterday and to-day. I have but tioo six-pounders prepared to move." We come down now to July 29, the next day. General Prentiss again telegraphs Fre mont; and you will see that the danger is daily becoming more imminent: " On yesterday 3,000 rebels, west of Bird's Point 40 miles'. 300 at Madrid, and three regiments from Union City or dered there; also troops from Randolph and Corinth- The number of organized rebels within fifty miliv of , exceed twelve thousand that is including Randolph troops ordered and not including several companies opposite in Kentucky." Again, on the 1st day of August, he tele graphed General Fremont a still darker pros pect, as follows. (New Madrid is on the Mis sissippi river, south of Cairo, and not very dis tant:) "The following information just received is, I be very reliable. General Pillow was at New Madrid on the 6 Morninq of (lie Sift, with eleven thousand troops well armed and well drilled; two regiments of cavalry splendidly equipped; one battery of 1lijin g artillery, ten pounders , an > ten guns manned and officered by foreigners ; several mountain how itzers and other artillery, amounting in all to one hundred. Nine thousand more moving to reinforce. He has promise* Governor Jackson to place twenty thousand men in Mis souri at once. I have a copy of his proclamation and also | one of his written passes." These dispatches came pouring in upon Gen- j eral Fremont from this exposed and important position, vital not only for Illinois but for the j whole Union, where there were but eight regi- j ments, only two of which they had a right to j hold there, the remaining six being three i months' men whose term had expired, and the \ rebels were forming round them twenty thou j sand strong. McClellan, but ten days before, j had, in reply to Lyon's appeals, in the tele- j gram I have quoted, expressly pointed to Cairo j as a threatened position, and had alluded to the inadequate forces at his command even for its defence. What should an officer do under such circumstances? "Fremont did the best | he could ; he got together all the men he could, and went down with steamboats to Cairo. And for this he was condemned all over the coun try, because he went down there with steam boats and u made a parade," when really it was useful, because it impressed the seces- j sionists and capitalists of St. Louis with the | conviction that he had a larger force than he | really had. But let me say, in passing, just here, that great complaint was made because General Fremont went down to the boat in a carriage and four. My friend did not speak of j it, but the charge has been in circulation all over the country. Now, the facts in relation to that matter are just these, as I learned at St. Louis. His friends, without his knowledge, when the expedition was ready to start, brought a carriage and four to his house for him to ride down to the boat in. When Fremont came to the door, and saw it, he positively re fased to ride in it, preferring to walk to the levee or to go in an ordinary carriage. Bat his friends told him that it had been said that he dare not show himself to the people for fear of being assassinated, and it was neces sary that he should go down to the boat as publicly as possible, in order to show that there was no truth in the report; and thereupon Fre mont consented to enter the carriage, and this was added to the charges against him. I have heard a great deal, too and the Housf will pardon me for these digressions, as a few incidental points strike my mind while speaking about a costly $6,000 house which he hired in St. Louis for himself and his staff. I have been in that house, and so has my friend from St. Louis ; for at one time both he and I were able to pass its " barricades." Other generals and other officers have found that they must exclude most of the thousand visit ors desiring to see them if they wished to at tend to their grave and responsible trusts; but from one end of the country to the other Fre mont was denounced for these barricades. I found out this in regard to that celebrated house : that the officers crowded into that one house, where they were at the instant call of the commanding general, no time lost in send ing messengers from one office to another, but all under the same roof, and the telegraph with them, would, if they bad been in separate quar ters, have been allowed, under the -*rmy regu lations, $6 400 for quarters. Fremont paid $6,000 a year for this house, and yet he has been denounced for that as an evidence of his reckless extravagance. There is another thing to which I wish to refer before I leave these minor points. When I reached St. Louis at one time. I heard a gr^at many sneers about Fremont having ordered five hundred tons of ice, and about the glorious time he and his staff would have with their sherry cobblers, &c., on their march to southwest Mis souri. I made inquiry about it, and found that it was on a requisition from the surgeon that this ice was supplied. It was not to accompany the army, but to be used in the hospitals along the railroads, where the sick were suffering, and to which the wounded, after battle, would, if possible, have been brought. It made my heart bleed to think that the General com manding should be denounced for this. In some of the Indiana regiments, my own fellow- citizens, for whose sufferings in the field or the hospital I have felt deeply, nearly half the men were lying sick from fevers con tracted by malaria and exposure, and because they were not used to the muddy water of the Missouri. Aftr they went into hospital, and drank the same water, they continued sick. One regiment, the twenty-second, had a majority in hospital from the malaria and the drinking of this water. The surgeons asked for ice for l|pspital purposes, for the sick and suffering men who had gone out to fight, to suffer, and to die, if needs be, for their country. And for yield ing to that, and showing, as he always has, a deep solicitude for the men under his command, Fremont was denounced in St. Louis and all over the country. Let the denunciation go on. The brave men whrse parched lips were thus cooled will not forget the man who has been thus condemned for this additional act of "ex travagance." But, Mr. Chairman, I have no time to ex amine and explain all the charges " thick as the leaves in Vallambrosa" which have been made against him. The balance, or most of them, at least, are of a piece with those to which I have alluded. Let them all pass. THE SADDEST DAYS 1ST MISSOURI. My friend says that the " hundred days" of Fremont were the saddest days for all the loyal persons in Missouri that they had seen. I differ with him in that. There was a sadder day for them than those. It was after Fre mont was deposed, and after this army that had gone forth with banners and music to south western Missouri, and the enemy fleeing before them, took up its line of merch back to the line of the railroad, and the more densely pop ulated settlements. The people of southwestern Missouri, who, in the exuberance of their zeal, when they saw the Stars and Stripes borne by Fremont's army, had clapped their hands with joy, and proclaimed themselves for the Union these men, from the very heights of confidence and hope, were plunged into the very valley of despondency by this forward movement being changed into a retreat. And when the army took up its backward march, they, knowing what fate they might expect to meet from the vengeance of the rebel hordes of Price the halter, the prison, outrage and robbery, tyran ny and spoliation followed that army, with their sorrowing families, in sad procession, back to St. Louis, penniless and homeless, when, had Fremont not been superseded, the army would have gone on with the banner they had welcomed full high advanced, instead of coming back and leaving all southwest Mis souri to be ravaged by traitors, un.til three months afterwards a more fortunate general led another army over the same route that Fre mont had trodden, and on the same mission. No, sir ; that was the saddest day that the loyal men of Missouri had ever seen. FREMONT'S PROCLAMATION. My friend has said that the proclamation of General Fremont was bombastic. I cannot turn aside from this argument to analyze its sentences and to discuss the question whether it was bombastic or firm and decided ; whether it was a mere flourish of the pen, or intended to prove that those who embarked in rebellion should find it a costly experiment, not only as to their lives, but also as to their possessions. The President modified it, as he had a consti tutional right to do. I have never quarreled with the President because he saw fit to say that that proclamation must be changed. I regret that ,he was of that opinion. But I know Mr. Lincoln to be an honest man as honest and as conscientious and true-hearted a man as walks the earth ; and I know he must have taken this position because he felt, look ing over the whole country, that that seemed to be his duty. Whether he erred or Fremont erred, I would be the last man to asperse any of Mr. Lincoln's acts, when they are based, as all know they are, on his convictions. When the President ordered the proclamation to be modified, General Fremont replied in a letter, moderate and not u bombastic," wherein he says he prefers, if the President feels it neces sary, he should himself modify it; and that he would bow to the order, as a subordinate should always bow to the rebuke of his chief. The following was his reply to the President's dis sent from his proclamation : " Trusting to have your confidence, I have been leaving it to event* themselves to show you whether or not I was soaping affairs here aw..rdii, K t,, ymr Ideas The hortest communication between Washington and St Louis -m-rally involves two days.and the employment of two days iu tinre of war goes largely toward th " tore, went along according to my own Judgment ieatiae the result <t my movement to justify me will, . in regard to my proclamation ol August 30th. B >tw :en the rebel armies, the Provisional Government, and h..,,,,. trai- tors, I felt the position b.id, and s iw .1 .jj.,^ I decided upon the proclamation, and tl,- form <>t it. : it the next morning and printed it u,e. s-inv day I did it without consultation or advice witn any one actin-' solely with my best judgment to serve the country and yourself and i erfecfly willing to rec-iv theamoantol censure which should be thought due if I made a false movement This is as much a movement in the war as a battle; and m going into these I shall have to act according to my judgf, the ground before me, as I did on this o 'ipon reflection, your better judgment still decides that I am wrong in the article respecting the liberation of slaves I have to ask that you will openly direct me to m rection. The implied censure will be received as a soldier always should the reprimand of his chief. If I were to re tract of my own accord it won!" imply that I myself thought it wrong, and that I had acted without the reflection which the gravity of th point demanded. But I did not. 1 with fuli deliberation, and upon the certain conviction that it was a measure right aud necessary; and 1 ti. I think my friend might have spared the sarcastic remarks which he made about the threatened mutiny at Springfield when General Fremont was removed from command. I have the assurance of a gentleman from Indmna, whose word is as goori as mv oath, or any other man's oath I mean Col. Hudson, the asrent of the State of hid ana who was there at the time, that there was sadness all over the camp when the news came that Fremont was actually su perseded. This may have been unjust to his successor. It may have been unwarranted ; but still the fact was so. The fact also exists that Fremont's utmost influence was promptly ex erted to preserve subordination among his troops. He bowed, without a murmur, to the decision, though it took from him the coveted opportuni ty of vindicating himself againsi all who had attacked him, and he demanded that all under his command should cordially obey his suc'-es- sor. His farewell to the " Mississippi army " which he had labored so earnestly, asrahut all adverse circumstances, to organize; which he had led, by forced marches that, seem incredi ble, almost into the presence of the retreating enemy, and which was the only army o the Union that had, up to that time, b-en I'd fi'tj miles away from a railroad or a navigable water course has been read, not only in our own but also in foreign lands, even by men who, with the multiplied charges against him, had doubted his capacity, with moistened eyes, as they saw how nobly that man, thus stricken do-vn, fell without a word of complaint, and closed his military career in the western deparmnt by stirring words of encouragement to the sralUnt soldiers from whom he was thus separated. Even one of the leading New York papers that de nounced him spoke in highly eulogistic language of the manner in which he met his fate.* And * HEADQUARTERS WESTERN DEPARTMENT, Springfield, J/b., Nov. 2, 1861. Soldiers of the Mississippi Army : Agreeably to orders this 8 have passed since then. Has there been a man who bore himself so meekly ? He visits New York, after official consent was at last obtained for him to leave St. Louis, and refuses the com plimentary reception that thousands would when twenty thousand of the constituents of my I as a commanding general, desiring thus to friend from Ohio. [Mr. GURLEY,] 'who had been weaken the power and cripple the resources of on his staff, came thronging to honor the fallen the traitors, embodied it in a proclamation, as General, and offered him an ovation in the city the Senator did in a sentence. of Cincinnati, he declined it, and passed through without accepting any hospitality, six months I come now to the siege and fall of Lexing ton. I think I have shown, by General Lyon's own statement, that he did not arraign Fre mont for not being strengthened and succored ; and I should have added then that Fremont gladly have joined in. No word of bitterness I arrived in St. Louis only fourteen days before or complaint falls from his lips. He comes to Lyon's death. I have shown where General this city, subpoenaed by a congressional coin- Lyon thought the responsibility rested. I have mittee, to testify as to his management of his shown the dispatch from General McClellan, responsible trust. He comes here, and bears only six days before Fremont arrived at St. himself as modestly a* in New York. Do you Louis, saying that there were only enough see any parade of his gaping wounds to the troops and arms to reinforce Cairo, and that the people ? Not at all. He has not even prompt- troops he could spare, and but two regiments ed me to say a single word in his behalf, at that, must only be used to defend St. Louis, although he knows me to be his friend. I have and only then " in case of absolute necessity." not asked him for a single fact in reference to I will now leave that part of the subject and his case, because I wanted to speak independ come to the surrender of Mulligan at Lexing- etly here, as a Representative of the people, ton. I think I can make out as strong a vin- He doubtless longs to be in the service of his dication for General Fremont there. I am country at this hour of her peril. And though glad to see that my friend from Missouri is pay- he may chafe at inaction, as his heart bounds ing so much attention. The attachment be at the thought of being again at the head of tween him and me has been such, that it is the advancing squadrons driving the enemies of most painful duty of my life to have to differ the country before him, have you seen a single from him to-day on such a subject. I would line of complaint from his pen against those far rather meet any one else here in the colli- who counseled his supersedure ? sion of conflicting views ; but we can differ, I But, to recur to his proclamation. Let me know as friends should differ when their roads ask what difference was there in substance be- separate^ tween that proclamation and the celebrated re- M ? f f lQ ^ said that troops could be got in mark in Cincinnati of ANDREW JOHNSON, that evei 7 direction to defend Cairo. Now here is a loyal, Jacksonlike and heroic Senator from dispatch from Governor Morton, of Indiana, in Tennessee, whom all true men in the country res ponse to Fremont's pressing appeal, dated cherish in their heart of hearts ? He said, about tbe 4th of .August, three days after Fremont the very time when Fremont issued his proc w . ent *? Cairo, and six days before Lyon was lamation, ' that no rebel had a right to own anything." Fremont said that the real and I " Can send five regiments if leave is granted by the De- personal property of rebels should be confisca- J?J m< !? tj as z am ordered to send them East as fast as ted to the public use, and that their slaves, if n they had any, should be declared free men ; Now, to show also how General Fremont and ANDREW JOHNSON, a slaveholding Senator was "aided" at that time, here is a dispatch from a slaveholding State, said that no rebel f rom Washington, eight days before Lyon died, had a ri^ht to own anything. I can see no dif an< * when Cairo, from General Prentiss's dis- ference between the two, except that Fremonr, patches, was so bare of artillery : WASHINGTON, August 2, 1861. day received, I take leave of you. Our army has been To Major Gen. J. C. FREMONT, Cairo: of sudden growth, and we have grown up together, and I This dispatch was sent yesterday to commanding officer nave become iamiliar with the brave and generous spirits department, Ohio, Cincinnati. Order two (2) companies which you bring to the defence of your country, and which fourth artillery, with their batteries, under Howard and ^^S^ffS^iSL ^.'l bi : m l aut carcer ' Kingsbury, to St. Louis without delay.' Continue as you have begun, and give to my successor the same cordial and enthusiastic support with which you have encouraged me. Emulate the splendid example which you have already before you, and let me remain as I am proud of the noble army which 1 have thus far labored to Dnng together. Soldiers, I regret to leave you most sincerely I thank you for the regard and confidence you have invariably shown to me. I deeply regret that I shall not have the honor to lead you to the victory which you are just about to win ; but I shall claim to share with you in the joy of every triumph, and trust always to be fraternally remem- lered by my companions in arms. JOHN C. FREMONT, Major General U. S. A. WINFIELD SCOTT. M. BLAIR, P. M. O. I doubt not Fremont's heart bounded as he read of this timely aid coming to his relief. But here is another dispatch from General Scott of the same day : WAR DEPARTMENT, Washington, August 2, 1861. To General FREMONT : Since ordering the two batteries for you yesterday, it ap- P.ears one company has no guns and the other is in Western Virginia; neither can be withdrawn. The order is coun termanded. WINFIELD SCOTT. I will not comment on the disappointment the General must have felt ; but he toiled on with almost daily drawbacks like these. I come now to Lexington. I happened on the 14th of September to be in the city of St. Louis, when the whole city was excited at the news which had just reached it that Price was inarching on that gallant and devoted band at Lexington ; and when my friend spoke about the home guards which General Fremont had under him, it reminded me that Colonel Mulli gan did not bear testimony to the efficiency of the home guards at Lexington. Mr. BLAIR, of Missouri. If Colonel Mulli gan made such a statement, he is not as mag nauimous as he is brave. I will undertake to prove that the home guards in the trenches a Lexington bore themselves as gallantly as did Colonel Mulligan, or any other man who was there. Colonel Grover was wounded, and died of his wounds ; Colonel Peabody was badly wounded ; Colonel White is still disabled by wounds received in that fight; and 'the gallant major of the Kansas City home guards, whose name at this moment, 1 am ashamed to say, has slipped my memory, also received honora ble wounds. Thus it will be seen that the com manding officer of every battalion of home guards was wounded ; and as large a propor tion of men were killed and wounded as among the Illinois regiments. No man should dispar- age^ those who have shed their blood for the country. Mr. COLFAX. Colonel Mulligan's testi mony is the reverse of that. I was not there, and therefore do not know. Mr. BLAIR, of Missouri. These are the facts of the case. Mr. COLFAX. I wish my friend to under stand that I do not arraign the home guards at all. I do not arraign anybody. I am simply on the defence, and am stating the facts from history, and from official documents, which can be read by the whole country. I only made the passing remark that Mulligan did not regard the home guards as valuable auxili aries in his defence, though my friend cites their number in various towns as part of Fre mont's effective force. When I arrived at St. Louis on the 14th of September I saw Lieutenant Governor Hall. He told me that Price was marching through the centre of Missouri, up toward Lexington, with fifteen thousand men, and that Fremont ought to send out a column for the pur pose of intercepting and capturing them. I asked him how many men Fremont had in St. Louis. He said he had twenty thousand men, and spoke with great positiveness as to the number. I thought if that was correct there was no excuse for not sending them, and went to headquarters at once to see General Fre mont. I told him it was represented that he had twenty thousand men at St. Louis, that Price was marching on Lexington with a large force, and urged that a force be sent without delay to cut him off. He replied : " Mr. COL FAX, I will tell you, confidentially, how many men we have in St. Louis, though I would not have it published on the streets for my life. The opinion in the city is that we have twenty thousand men here, and this gives us strength. If it were known here what was the actual number, our enemies would be promptly in formed. But I will show you how many there are." He rang the bell, and his secretary brought in the muster-rolls of the morning. I read them, and there were in the city and for a circuit of seven miles round, less than eight thousand men, home guards and all. There were actually but two full regiments, and the remainder of the force was made up of frag mentary and undisciplined regiments of two hundred and fifty, four hundred, and six hun dred men. It was a beggarly array of an army in proportion to what was needed at that time for the defence even of that city against ene mies without or within, and I told him so. " But," said I, " can't you spare some of these men ?" The tears stood in his eyes as he handed me two telegraphic dispatches, just re ceived by him, which I read then with pain and sadness, and will read now, and the House can judge how they aided him in his plans for the reinforcement of Mulligan, or the capture of Price's army : WASHINGTON, September 14, 1861. To Major General FREMONT : On consultation wish the President and he'd of Depart ment, it was determined to call upon you for five thousand well-armed infantry, to be sent here without a moment's de-lay. G/ve them three days cooked rations. This iruft from your forces to be replaced by you f<oin the States of Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, &c. How many men have you un der arms in your district ? Please answer fully and imme diately SIMON CAMERON, Secretary of War.. WASHINGTON, September 14, 1861. To Major General FREMONT : Detach five thousand infantry from your department, to come here without delay, and report the number of the troops that will be left with you. The President dictates. WINi'IELD SCOTT. I have shown you before that there were reg- ments there waiting, without guns, and yet, when, under the^e desperate circumstances, jreneral Fremont bought guns, the best he could get, he was denounced because they were not Springfield muskets or Enfield rifles, or the >est arms known to the service. He was not allowed to send unarmed regiments, to be arm ed after they reached Washington, or on the road. From these he could have filled the or der easily. But they must be " well-armed n fan try." And he had been begging for '' arms, irms of any kind," the whole fifty days he had hen been in command in the West, but mostly n vain. And now, " five thousand well-armed nfantry " were needed, " without a moment's elay," to swell the forces of the army of the 5 otomac. I do not allude to this to criticise, jike Fremont, I believe the capital of the ountry was, first of all, to be defended ; but if 10 he was foiled in his plans by demands like these, at such a critical moment, impartial history hereafter will show that it was his misfortune, not his fanlt- Mr. BINGHAM. What is the date of those dispatches ? Mr. COLFAX. Saturday, the 14th of Sep tember ; the very day I was there just six days before the fall of Lexington for I wish the House to remember that Mulligan surren dered Friday, September 20. I asked him what he would do, and my heart sank as I asked. Here was the best of his forces ordered away to Washington. I told him I would, if in his place, telegraph to Mr. Lincoln that he had not the eighty thousand efficient soldiers in his department that rumor stated he had ; that Missouri would be lost if the troops were taken away. ^ No," said he, "that would be insub ordination, with which I have already been unjustly charged. The capital must be again in danger, and must be saved, even if Missouri fall and I sacrifice myself." After that interview, after the noble and patriotic sentiment that fell from his lips, I should have been false to my convictions of right and justice, if I ha$ not stood up here to-day and ^ defended the man who was willing, even at his own sacrifice, to save the capital of the nation. Mr. BLAIR, of Missouri. The gentleman says Genpral Fremont on that day took out the muster-rolls, and showed him how many troops there were at St. Louis. Mr. COLFAX. Yes, sir; less than thousand. Mr. BLAIR, of Missouri. It so happens that on that same day the 14th of September General Fremont returned to Simon Cameron, Secretary of War, the following statement of the forces under his command : St. Louis, (including tome guarl) . . . Under Brigadier General Pope, (including home guard) Lexington, (including home guard).... Jefferson City, (one-quarter home guard) Rolla Trenton '.'.'.'.'.'." Cape 'Jirardeau.. '.'.'.'.'. Bird's Point and Norfolk. . . '. '. ".'".' '. Cairo, (including McClernand's brigade')' Fort Holt, opposite Cairo, Kentucky shore" ' Paducah Under General' Lane' Mound City, near Cairo... eight 5,483 2,400 9,677 4,700 3,057 650 3,510 4,826 3,595 7,791 2,200 900 55,693 Thus you will see that there were some twenty thousand men at and about Cairo ; and you will further see, by reference to the documents, that, under the order the gentleman has read, not a man was sent out of Missouri, and but two regiments were started from his department at all. Two regiments, I believe, left his depart ment, and went as far as General Buell's depart ment, and went no further. The order was Countermanded, and no more troops sent. The two regiments started were, I believe, Illinois troops m or about Cairo and Paducah. General Fremont did not send a man out of Missouri, I repeat, under that order, and he was not re quired to do it. So that the explanation'which the gentleman gives, and which General Fremont gives, by way of excusing himself for not send ing reinforcements to Colonel Mulligan, about this order to send five thousand men to Wash ington, amounts to just this : that no troops were sent to Washington at all under that order ; only two regiments were sent from his depart ment under it, and none from Missouri un der it. Mr. COLFAX. The gentleman from Mis souri occupied two hours in his speech, and he has taken a considerable portion of my time since. I shall only* ask to be allowed to go on after the expiration of my hour for the time that has been taken from me ; and I do not know that the committee will give me that, [cries of t( Oh, yes !"] I presume a majority of the committee will give their consent, but a single member has the power to prevent it. I will enlighten my friend from Missouri now on the point he has cited. When this order came to send five regiments to Washington, General Fremont sent down to Carondelet and ordered the twenty-fourth Indiana regiment, one of the only two full regiments he had in St. Louis or its vicinity, to proceed to Washington, but the officers of the regiment came up to his headquarters and urged him to allow them to remain in Missouri ; and that is the reason they did not go. He then changed the order, and like a faithful subordinate he telegraphed to Washington that he was preparing to obey the order although it made his heart bleed. Here are the dispatches : * HEADQUARTERS WESTERN DEPARTMENT, ST. Lot-is, September 14, 1861. To Colonel E. D. TOW.VSEND, A. 'A. G., Washington City : I am preparing to obey the orders received this evening for the five regiments. J. C FREMO\T, Major General Commanding. HEADQUARTERS WESTERN DEPARTMENT ST. Loris, September 14, 1S61. To General THOMAS, A. G., Washington City : I am preparing to obey the orders received this even'ng from the Secretary of War for the five regiments. I a ! so send messenger. J. C. FREMONT, Major General Commanding. True, as the gentleman from Missouri says, the order was at last partially countermanded ; but, when days were almost years, he was en gaged in preparations for sending on three more regiments of "well-armed infantry," besides the two he did send, for FOUR DAYS out of the six that elapsed between the order from Washing ton and the fall of Lexington ; and engaged besides in the most vigorous attempts, out of his scattered forces in the vast area of disloyal territory they were holding, from Paducah to the Kansas frontier, to reinforce the imperilled Mulligan. Here is the countermanding order, after four days and nights of anxious labors to omply both with duty on one side and orders on the other, for which his reward has been a sad one indeed: 11 To Major Gen. FREMONT : WASHINGTON, September 18, 1801. General Scott acquiesces to your wishes in your prop osition to retain troops not already forwarded. Ho has tel egraphed order to retain the two regiments which have left for Cincinnati to wait orders for a few days, if they have not passed beyond that city. E. D. TOWXSEND. Let us return to Mulligan's peril. Thinking there might still be hope of obtaining reinforce ments by appealing to the Governors of States near at hand, for, if they could send troops im mediately to St. Louis, he could order up all his available forces there by steamboat toward Lexington, he telegraphed, on this very 14th of September, to Governor Morton and Governor Dennison, of Indiana and Ohio, for help. And these a r e the replies, (Mr. Coggeshall was Gov ernor Dennison's military secretary :) INDIANAPOLIS, September 14, 1861. "We have received orders to send all available forces to Washington. 0. P. MORTON, Governor of Indiana. COLUMBUS, OHIO, September 15, 1861. No troops are ordered to *- astern Virginia. All our troops are ordered to Western Virginia. Dennison is in Washington. W. T. COGGESHALL. His only remaining hope was in his own men, his scattered forces, to weaken himself at some points on his long line to save Lexington, if possible. And what did he do ? My friend says and I have his exact words " it cannot be shown that he moved one single man towards Lexington at all." Lexington fell on Friday, the 20th of September. I shall remember the day to the last hour of my life ; for I watched, as did my constituents, day by day and hour by hour for news from there, with a solicitude that excluded all thought of all other questions. General Fremont telegraphed in every direc tion. He ordered General Pope to come down to Lexington and reinforce Mulligan there ; he ordered General Sturgis to come down and rein force him; he ordered Jefferson C. Davis, of Indiana, acting brigadier general at Jefferson City, to go forward and reinforce him. He used every means in his power. The telegraphic wires were hot with his dispatches, sent in every direction, to secure the reinforcement of Mulligan. See the columns of them of these eventful days in the official dispatches, at last published in the New York Tribune, and which attest his sleepless energy so strikingly. Now, four days before Mulligan surrendered, see what General Pope telegraphs : PALMYRA, September 16, 1861. To Major General FREMONT : Fnun paper just handed me, I learn, for the first time, that important matters are occurring at Lexington. The troops I sent to Lexington will be there the day after to-morrow, and consist of two full regiments of infantry, four pieces of artillery, and 150 irregular horse. These, with the two Ohio regiments, which will reach there on Thursday, will make a reinforcement of 4,000 men and four pieces of artillery. Do you wish me to come down to St. Louis, or go to Canton and Keokuk to finish matters in this section? The follow ing force along this road at Hannibal : At Kansas, 430 ; at Palmyra, 320 of twentieth Illinois ; at Hudson, 4:20 of Tas ter's men ; at Brookfield, 650 of Morgan's regiment ; at *t Joseph, coming east, 3,000 Iowa and Missouri irregular troops. Please answer to Quincy. JOHN POPE, Brigadier General. So that General Fremont had the promise, that on the 18th, two days before Lexington actually fell, two full regiments, four cannon, and one hundred and fifty cavalry should suc cor the brave garrison there holding out, and that by Thursday, the 19th, one day before Mulligan surrendered, the reinforcement irom Pope's forces for Lexington should be increased still further, to four thousand men. That they did not arrive there and save it, is not Fre mont's fault, then. Nor was this all. On the 13th of September, the day before I arrived there, it was supposed at St. Louis that Price's advance threatened Booneville ; and Fremont telegraphed General Sturgis, then in north Missouri, as follows : HEADQUARTERS WESTERN DEPARTMENT, St. Louis, September 13, 1861. SIR : Information having been received at these head quarters of an intended attack on Booneville, you arc hereby ordered to move at once by the shortest possible route, and witb all practicable speed, direct to that place with your force of .infantry and artillery. J. C. FREMONT, Major General Commanding. To Brigadier General STURGIS, Mexico. But on the eventful 14th of September it was discovered that the attack would probably be on Lexington, and he telegraphed again to Stur gis, as follows : HEADQUARTERS WESTERN DEPARTMENT, St. Louis, September 14, 1861. SIR : You are hereby directed to move, via Utica, with all practicable speed, to Lexington, on the Missouri river, with your force of infantry and artillery. You will send back the three companies of the Fremont hussars, under Captain Blum, to St. Louis. The most practicable route from Utica to Lexington for you will be by Austinville. Finneys' Grove, and Morton. J. C.FREM "NT. _ Major General Commanding. To Brigadier General STURGIS, Mexico. On the 13th, he twice telegraphs to 'Acting Brigadier General Jeff. C. Davis, at Jefferson City, to send forward two regiments to strengthen Lexington, and says, "move promptly." On the 14th he telegraphs him that he is sending him up regiments and batteries from St. Louis, while he also notifies the Department at Wash ington that they should have the five regiments they demanded from him two from St. Louia, two from Cairo and vicinity, and one from Illi nois absolutely stripping 1 himself in St. Louis of every means of defence to comply with these wants in every direction. Not content with issuing orders, you find nearly half a dozen the same day to the same officer, urging celerity, energy, rapid movement. No man living could have done more. I add here the official dis patch to Jeff. C. Davis : HEADQUARTERS WESTERN DEPARTMENT, St. Louis, September 14, 1861. SIR : As a column of the enemy's force is moving upon Lexington, you art' herebv directed Immediately t>> order two of th" regiments under your command to the reinforce ment of that place. Orders hav<> already been Issued to two regiments in this city to proceed to Jefferson City, and re- inform your command. Brigadier General Sturgis, now at Mexico, will i'lso re pair to Lexington with his entire force of infantry and a 12 battery of artillery. On his arrival, he will assume com- J. C. FREMONT, Major General Commanding. To Colonel JEFF. C. DAVIS, Colonel Commanding at Jefferson City. Now, let us examine what was done. Pope's reinforcements did not arrive ; General Sturgis did come to a point near the river on the oppo site side from Lexington j and I have the testi mony of Colonel Mulligan himself that if he had ac ually come within sight with his forces on the opposite side of the river, Price had got so tired of fighting, the defence had been so persistent and unyielding, that he would have retired, notwithstanding his force of twenty thousand men, with eight brigadier generals, besieging one colonel of the Union forces. But the evidence is, that Sturgis carne down to a point within a few miles of the river, and learn ing that the ferry-boats had been destroyed, and that, therefore, it was impossible for him to cross the river, and learning from a contra band for they were permitted then to come within our lines and give information as to rebel movements that Price's force was twenty to twenty-five thousand, deemiag that he had not a force sufficient to meet them, as he had not, he retired. Fremont, however, supposed that, by four days after his order to him, he would have reached Lexington ; and on the 18th two days before Lexington fell he sent orders to him at that point. Jefferson C. Davis, upon the reception of General Fremont's orders, embarked as soon as possible for it takes time his available force upon some steamboats ; and they pro ceeded up the river to a place called jGlasgow, where, learning that the rebels had erected bat teries, they landed for the purpose of storming them before proceeding under their fire; and in the darkness of the night they fired into each other, and being thrown into confusion, they did not get to Lexington in time to reinforce Colonel Mulligan. These three forces from different directions, then, set out under the orders of General Fre mont to reinforce the gallant defenders of Lex ington, and he failed in accomplishing that purpose because the elements seemed to be against him, and not because he did not seek in every possible way to succor that besieged garrison. His dispatches to his secret agents are not, of course, published ; but a reply from one of them, Charles Noyes, says that Sturgis was expected to reach Lexington the Wednes day night before the surrender, and General Lane the Thursday night before. B^ate seemed to prevent these reinforcements, not the inac tivity or indifference of Fremont. Now, to appreciate the difficulties General Fremont had to contend with in bringing any considerable number of men to any one point, you must remember the extended frontier, and the large number of posts he had to defend. Troops were stationed, and had to be, not only at St. Louis and Cairo, but all through north Missouri, at Lexington, at Jefferson City, at Rolla, at Ironton, at Cape Girardeau, at Bird's Point, at Fort Holt, opposite Cairo, at Norfolk, at Mound City, at Paducah, and many other points. Judge Blair testifies how difficult it was for him, here, at the capital, and with the influence wielded by a member of the Cabinet, to obtain any attention to Western interests, or compliance with Western requisitions. But Fre mont, with troops constantly ordered away from him, with a plentiful lack of guns, with credit impaired, if not ruined, by- the possibility of his removal, (and since then these creditors have seen their claims delayed for months, till examined by a board of commissioners, and even still unpaid,) was expected to organize victory, and triumph over every adverse circum stance. But let us look further, and see what was the condition of affairs when Price marched upon Lexington. Why, sir, at the very time when Price, with from fifteen to twenty thousand men, was threatening Lexington, McCulloch was threatening Rolla and Jefferson City, Har- dee was threatening Ironton, in southeast Mis souri, and Polk and Pillow, with a number of troops, estimated at twenty to twenty-six thou sand, were down at Columbus, threatening our inferior forces at Cairo ; and in addition to that, there were the forces of Jeff. Thompson, Martin Green, and other guerrilla bands ; and there were organized bands of rebels in every county in the State. The State was heaving and seething with insurrection under his feet, and he had to restore it to its loyalty. All this Fre mont had to encounter, with nearly eighty thousand rebels threatening all these exposed points, with the disloyalists at their homes, and with an inadequate force to meet the enemy. Sir, a responsibility was thrown upon him which I would not to-day take upon my shoul* ders for the best office in the gift of the Ameri can people or of the world. THE INVESTIGATING COMMITTEE. While he was struggling nobly to perform his duty, from every side came the poisoned arrows of calumny, and the ex parte te&timony of the investigating committee of this House, charging him with connivance with contractors to plunder the Treasury. I regret to have to allude to their course, for every member of the committee, I believe and hope, is my personal friend. Sir, I have learned to look with some dis trust upon ex parte testimony. I recollect that when my friend from Ohio, [Mr. SHERMAN,] who now occupies a seat at the other end of the Capitol, was at the head of a committee sit ting in judgment upon the then Secretary of the Navy, Mr. Toucey, they wrote to Secretary Toucey, as I found in re-reading their report recently, that they were going to examine into the live oak contract and other matters, and 13 that lie would be welcome to come and listen to the evidence j and subsequently, when they had taken the evidence of eight witnesses, they had a correct copy of it made and sent it to Sec retary Toucey, with a respectful letter, offering to subposna any witnesses he might desire to have called ; and when subsequent witnesses appeared before them, they took the same course. This was an example of impartiality towards a political opponent worthy of admira tion and imitation. Let me add, also, what is well known to this House, that when the celebrated investigating committee, presided over by my friend from Pennsylvania, [Mr. COVODE,] were engaged ic the labor of exposing the corruptions of Mr. Buchanan's administration-, their chairman was careful to furnish promptly, not only to the President, but also to his Cabinet ministers, copies of all testimony implicating them, thus giving them an opportunity of knowing what was charged against them, of disproving the charges if incorrect, or of explaining them away if they were susceptible of explanation. But how was it in the case of Fremont ? I undertake to say, and history proves it, that while Fremont was out hunting the enemy, some persons not the committee, perhaps, but his enemies in St. Louis were hunting up witnesses against him to have ex parte testi mony taken there ; and no sooner was it taken, while he was still in the face of the foe en deavoring to obtain victory for our arms and periling his life for his country, a synopsis of these ex parte statements w_as given by some one to some newspaper correspondent, and sent upon the wires all over the country, so as to poison the public mind against the commander of the de*partment of the West, and assist in achieving his overthrow. Sir, I think that in common justice, in common humanity if there are such things as jus tice and husaanity when he returned, a de posed general, the committee might, if they did not see fit to do so before, have sent him - the adverse evidence, which up to this hour they have never done, and said to him : " Sir, before you were sent to this department you were supposed to be an honest man, but this testimony clouds your character. It was taken in your absence; if you have any vindication or defence to offer, we will subpoena your wit nesses, and give their testimony to the world in company with that taken against you while you were in the field." But no; the tes timony was never sent to him, and he -has never seen it, unless some member of the House ere this has lent him a copy ; he has had no official information concerning it. My friend from Missouri says that Fremont has %3t demanded a trial. I wish to ask him if he did not make charges against General Fremont before the late Secretary of War, Mr. Cameron? Mr. BLAIR, of Missouri. Certainly. Mr COLFAX. Then I wish to say this : that if Secretary Cameron, the Minister of War, thought those charges worthy of consideration, it was his duty to have put Fremont on trial. I wish to ask my friend now, if he has not also* made charges against General Fremont before the present Secretary of War ? Mr. BLAIR, of Missouri. I preferred char ges against him at the time, and the gentleman knows very well that I have preferred no charges since ; but I know that the Judge Advocate has preferred charges since. Mr. COLFAX. Then, if the present Secre tary of War deems them worthy of investiga tion, it is his duty to order a trial. General Fremont has the same right as the meanest and wickedest^ man in the country has the right to meet his accusers face to face, and to stand up in his own defence, and vindicate himself against these charges. My friend was arrested by General Fremont, and I feel authorized to say that I went to Fremont at the time and remonstrated with him, and spoke in terms of condemnation of his arrest of my friend as being unwise and wrong ; that the country would regard it as the result of a personal quarrel, &c. Sincerely the friend of both, I desired, if possible, to restore friendly relations between them. It was during the dark days of which I have spoken ; but General Fremont replied that it was for insub ordination ; that he could not expect subordi nation in others, if, on account of my friend's influence and power, which he did not under rate, he passed his by in silence. Still, I deeply regretted it. But when my friend was dischar ged by order of General Scott, did hef think it necessary for his character- that, after having been thus discharged, he should still insist on a trial ? Mr. BLAIR, of Missouri. Yes, sir; and I did demand a trial. Mr. COLFAX. But none was had. Then, if my friend has made charges against General Fremont, and the War Department, either under Mr. Cameron or Mr. Stanton, deemed the charges such as substantially affect his present rank, it was their duty to arraign him and put him on trial. Mr. BLAIR, of Missouri. Charges have been preferred against him by the proper officer of the Government the judge advocate of the United States. Mr. WADSWORTH asked a question in reference to the contract for the fortificationi of St. Louis, which was inaudible at the re porters' desk. Mr. COLFAX. I am speaking now, not on dollars and cents, but to vindicate the history of the past ; but I will answer the gentleman from Kentucky as follows : I said at the open ing of my remarks, if the gentleman had been kind enough to listen to me, which I suppose he did not, that I did not defend the fortification contract, nor did I deem it wise or economical. 14 Mr. WADSWORTH. I heard the gentle man say so. Mr. GOLF AX. I am not called upon to defend that contract, but in justice to General Fremont, it ought to be stated that the con tractor offered, if the work could be done by day only, instead of day and night uninterrupt edly, when he would have to pay extra for night work, to do it for sixty per cent, less ; but Fre mont said, " time is worth more than money ; do the work immediately, with all the force you can put on, working night and day " for he was just then preparing for his march against Price. He needed all available troops, and, with the fortifications, he could leave St. Louis with a smaller force for its defence. But I want now to put a question to the gen tleman, argumentum ad hominum, as he has opened this question. Suppose you find that some claim has passed this Congress which everybody concedes to be entirely wrong and inexcusable; and suppose some man looking over the Globe finds, on the list of yeas and nays on the vote by which that money was im properly taken out of the Treasury, that Mr. WADSWORTH voted for it, and arraigns him be fore the people for it. This, on exparte evi dence, would look badly. Here is a cheating claim on the Treasury, the people would say, and the claimant gets his money out of our Treasury by the direct aid and consent of our Representative's vote. But there are two sides to it. The gentleman from Kentucky rises and says, " Does not my defamer know that the Committee of Claims reported favorably upon that claim, and that it is the custom of members of Congress to follow the report of the Commit tee of Claims, in cases which they have closely scrutinized, and against which they themselves see no objection ?" And when the gentleman has thus been heard in his defence, everybody says that, although he voted for the claim, he is acquitted, because his explanation is satis factory. That is the only fair way to try a man. Strike, but hear before you strike. If Fremont shall prove that he made this contract to carry on the work day and night until its completion, upon the advice of engineers and men experi enced in work of this kind, it will be at leasi some palliation of it, just as the gentleman's vote in favor of a bad claim, on the recocamen dation of the proper committee, would palliate it. I do not know what General Fremont's de fence is. I have not asked what his defence is. Mr. WADSWORTH. The case which the gentleman puts is not at all like this case. It appears that Fremont made a contract with an adventurer of the name of Beard for earth works and embankments, at $2 50 per cubic yard for removing the earth, when the com mittee tell us it was only worth sixty cents a cubic yard a difference of $1 90. Now, if I did anything of that sort as a mem ber of Congress, I should say that I was un worthy of holding my seat here, and my con stituents would be justified in denouncing my action as the result of bribery or other im proper influence. Mr. COLFAX. I am reminded by a friend near me that General Fremont, in his letter to Senator WADE, the chairman of the committee on the conduct of the war, explains this matter himself. As I do not defend these contracts, deeming them too costly, though I may err against him in that, I will let him make the explanation in his own language. Mr. WADSWORTH. I have never seen that explanation. Mr. COLFAX. I am going to read it to you : " When the prices for his work were under discussion and were referred to me by General McKinstry, I directed this officer to reduce them to what was just and reasonable to both parties, having reference to the circumstances under which the work was done, and the extra prices that had bean paid, so as to le'ave the contractor what might be strictly a fair profit on his labor, and his decision, whatever it was, was approved by me. For cost of construction and other details with which I am not acquainted, I respectfully refer the committee to the testimony of the quartermaster and the contractor, whom I have asked to have summoned. " To show their nature and value, the report and testimo ny of the engineers, who planned and who were superin tending the work, will be furnished the committee. The ob ject aimed at was the completion of the city defences in the shortest possible time. The works are thoroughly and well built, covering and comprehending the city itself and the surrounding country on a length of about ten miles, and the total cost is, I think, less than $300,000. " In my judgment, having in view the time and manner in which they were built, the money was well applied, and as a measure of expediency and policy, it was fully worth to the Government what it cost." This is just exactly what General McClellan and the Secretary of War do every day in the matter of ordnance, and a thousand other things. If Mr. Stanton attends to the business of his department, he would not have time to look after the details of all the contracts that are made for the vast service of that depart ment. He regards the heads of bureaus as his legal advisers in the matter. General Fre mont did the same thing with the heads of his the engineer department, quartermaster, &c., &c. All over the country General Fremont has been held responsible for what General McKinstry had done. He never appointed General McKinstry, nor could he remove him. McKinstry was appointed by the last Adminis tration, and continued at that post by the pres ent one. He was quartermaster general of that post, just as General Meigs is Quarter master General of the United States. He there fore had the authority to do this thing. Mr. STEVENS. I understand 'that Mc Kinstry is a good officer, and^was appointed on recommendations of an influential firm do ing business partly in this city and partly in St. Louis. Mr. COLFAX. As I said before, Mr Chair- man, I have not attempted to arraign anybody. I have not arraigned the commanding general of the army of the Potomac, or any Cabinet officer, or the President, or anybody else. I have only gathered together the facts of history, collected these official documents that every 15 one can read, and laid them before the House ; and with a few remarks in conclusion, I will relieve my fellow-members from listening to me further. The CHAIRMAN. The gentleman has had consent to proceed without limitation as to time. Mr. COLFAX. I will not take advantage of th$ good nature of the House. When Fre mont was superseded, what was the condition of affairs in Missouri ? It has gone into his tory, and will live there during all time, his proudest and noblest vindication. The whole State, thanks to nis energy, was more tranquil on that day than was Western Virginia or Kentucky at that period all except a little corner down by Arkansas, and an United States officer in uniform could ride alone from Springfield, near the Arkansas line, to St. Louis, unmolested and unharmed ; that was certainly one thing not to his discredit. In the second place, the army which he was heading was further South than any other army oi the Union on that day. That was an other good sign. In the third place, it was headed in the right direction southward, after the enemy. That $tfas still another good sign. He may be a very incompetent general, as my friend insists, though I differ widely from him on that point ; but it took three months after his supersedure to get things back to just the point where he left them, saying nothing of all the rebel out rages during the interim. In the fourth place, the men under his com mand were filled with loyalty and enthusiasm for him. If he had been this imbecile, this corrupt man, this timid man, this incompetent general, they would have scorned and despised him, and would have revolted against him. The brave life guard commanded by Zagonyi who, my friend says, won no victory at Springfield performed the most brilliant achievement of the war up to that time, and lighted up the horizon, after long months of inaction and reverse, with the glorious illumination of that act the pres age of future triumphs for our arms. But that charge upon the enemy, with the war cry of "Fremont and the Union," cost them dearly. When the life guard came back to St. Louis, they were dismissed from service "for words spo ken at Springfield." They were refused rations for themselves ; they were refused forage for their horses ; they were treated with disapproval and almost contempt "for words spoken at Spring field." They were mustered out of service ; and Zagonyi, who would gladly give his life to make another such charge on the rebel host, finds noplace open for him in the- armies of the Union. They had dared to charge upon the enemy, shouting the name of their chief, whom, perhaps, they " Loved, not wisely, but too well." But I do insist, however we may differ as to Fremont, that the noble band who hurled them selves on ten times their number, drove them before them by their impetuous charge, and planted the starry -banner of the Union on the court-house spire at Springfield, should be spo ken ofon this floor with admiration of their heroism, and not by endeavoring to underrate their brave endeavor. In the fifth place, Fremontfhad marched his army rapidly after the enemy, notwithstanding the adjutant general of the United States, who had seen him on the road, said he could not move it for lack of transportation. Mr. Thur- low Weed, in his letter, which was also thrown in the scale against Fremont, at the trying hour when his supersedure was pending, and he himself was in the field, said the same thing that Fremont had got to the Osage, but that he could not progress beyond it, and that it was well understood at Warsaw he did not in tend to. But, sir, the man who scaled the Rocky Mountains is not the man who stands idle " for lack of transportation." He threw a bridge across the Osage river in thirty-six working hours, infusing into the troops the same energy that has characterized his whole life. The army crossed, and proceeded with forced marches on after the enemy in the right direction. But the moment came that he was to be superseded, and then he fell. In the sixth place, whatever charges have been made that he unwisely reposed confidence in certain contractors, not even his bitterest enemies have intimated that a single dollar of the people's money, beyond his salary, has stuck to his fingers. In the seventh and last place, when he left the State of Missouri, all the railroads of the State were running for every mile of their length, and to their full capacity; and he left behind him in the city of St. Louis a monument of his good sense, if not of his genius, in making a connection of all the railroads at the levee, so that the rolling stock of all three could be, in .case of a sudden emergency, used on any one of them. That closes his career as the com mander of the department of the West; and the duty, of all others, the most grateful to me, vindicating a friend in the hour of trial and adversity, having been performed, it only re mains for me to thank the House for the gen erous extension of time they have given me. APPENDIX Fremont's plan last September for tlie Kentuclcy and Tennessee campaign, ivJiick was doubtless referred by the President to the General commanding : [PRIVATE.] HEADQUARTERS WESTERN DEPARTMENT, September 8, 1861. To the PRESIDENT^ MY DEAR SIR : I send by another hand what I ask you to consider in respect to the subject of the note by your special messenger. In this I desire to ask your attention to the position of affairs in Kentucky. As the rebel troops, driven out from Missouri, had invaded :<cky in considerable force, and by occu pying Union city, Hickman, and Columbus, were preparing to seize Paducah and attack Cairo, I judged it impossible, without losing important advantages, to defer any longer a forward movement. For this purpose I have drawn from the Missouri side a part of the force which had been stationed at Bird's Point, Cairo, and Cape Girardeau, to Fort Holt and Paducah, of which places we have taken pos session.* As the rebel forces outnumbered ours, and the counties of Kentucky between the Mississippi and Tennessee rivers, as well as those along the latter and the Cumberland, are strongly secessionist, it becomes imperatively necessary to have the co-operation of the loyal Union forces under Generals Anderson and Nelson, as well as of those already encamped opposite Louisville, under Colonel Rous seau. I have reinforced, yesterday, Paducah with two regiments, and will continue to strengthen the position with men and artillery. As soon as General Smith, who commands there, is reinforced sufficiently for him to spread his forces, he will have to take and hold May field and Lo/elaceville, to be in the rear and flank of Columbus, arid to occupy Smithland, controlling in this way the mouths of both the Tennessee and the Cumberland rivers. At. the same time, Colonel Rousseau should bring his force, increased, if possible, by two Ohio regiments, in boats to Henderson, and, taking the Henderson and Nashville *This anticipated the rebels a few days, and enabled the United States forces to command the mouth of the Ten- nesse river. railroad, occupy Hopkinsville, while General Nelson should go with a force of 5,000 by rail road to Louisville, and from tnere to Bowling Green.* As the population in all the counties through which the above railroads pass are loyal, this movement could be made without delay or mo lestation to the troops. Meanwhile, Gen. Grant would take possession of the entire Cairo and Fulton railroad, Piketon, New Madrid, and the shore of the Mississippi opposite Hicjcman and Columbus.f The foregoing disposition having been effected, a combined attack will be made upon Columbus, and if successful in that, upon Hickraan, while Rousseau and Nelson will move in concert, by railroad, to Nashville, Tenn., oc cupying the State capital, and, with an adequate | force, New Providence. The conclusion of this movement would be a combined advance to ward Memphis, on the Mississippi, as well as the Memphis and Ohio railroad, and I trust the result would be a glorious one to the coun try. IH a reply to a letter from Gen. Sherman, by the hand of Judge Williams, in relation to the vast importance of securing possession in advance of the country lying between the Ohio, Tennessee, and Mississippi, I have to-day sug gested the first part of the preceding plan. By extending my command to Indiana, Tennessee, and Kentucky, you would enable me to attempt the accomplishment of this all-important result : and in order to secure the secresy necessary to its success, I shall not extend the communica tion which I have made to Gen. Sherman, or repeat it to any one else. With high respect and regard, I am, very truly, yours, J. C. FREMONT. Gi'Ron v.':i. : - nut thns ocdimed ; I'.rH wag fub sequently tak uie rebels, who advanced from it to Muldraugh's Hill, where they threatened Louis ville. f New Madrid was not thus occupied, and has since been held by the rebels ; and in the endeavor, months subsequent ly, to occupy the region opposite Columbus, the disaster of Bclmont occurred. WASHINGTON, D. C. SCAMMELL & C0. ; PRINTERS, CORNER OF SECOND & INDIANA AYENUE, THIRD FLOOR, 1862.